GARDEN CITY, N.Y.–Lifetime Brands reported increases in its year-end and fourth-quarter results for 2009, while net sales saw decreases for both periods. For the fourth quarter ended December 31, 2009, net income was $5 million, up from a negative $36.8 million the prior year. Net income for the year also saw an increase, reported as $2.7 million, up from a negative $47.8 million in 2008.
Sales for both the quarter and the year, however, saw declines. For the fourth quarter, net sales totaled $128.1 million, compared to $156.7 million for the same period in 2008. Net sales for the year were $415 million, compared to $487.9 million for 2008.
The company’s wholesale segment net sales dropped to $118.2 million in the fourth quarter, and $389 million for the year, from $119.1 million and $403.6 million, respectively, in 2008. The company attributed the dips to lower sales in food preparation, reflecting changes in key customers’ sourcing patterns and in product mix, and absence of sales from the defunct Linens ’n Things, as well as lower sales in its home decor category due to the elimination of certain low margin businesses. Sales were offset by a full year of sales of Mikasa products in tabletop, and added net sales in its new thermal mugs and water bottles lines.
The company’s direct-to-consumer segment saw fourth quarter net sales of $9.9 million, and for the year, $26 million, compared to $28.5 million in 2008, which exclude net sales of the company’s retail outlet stores, which were closed at the end of 2008.
The year “2009 ended on a very positive note for Lifetime Brands,” said Jeffrey Siegel, chairman, chief executive officer and president. “Throughout the year, we focused on expanding our market share, improving our gross margin, controlling expenses and reducing inventory. While the business environment was consistently challenging, with soft consumer spending exacerbated by retailers’ destocking actions, our strategy of providing products that set us apart from the competition produced solid results for the fourth quarter and the full year.”